Pope Francis returned Wednesday to the Vatican after spending 11 days in a Rome hospital to recover from colon surgery. The Vatican also said the pope is making “normal clinical progress.”
Pope Francis returns to the Vatican after undergoing colon surgery
The Vatican said July 14 that Pope Francis was discharged from Gemelli Hospital shortly after 10:30 a.m. Rome time and left the hospital to return to his Vatican residence by car.
On his way home, the pope stopped to pray at the Basilica of St. Mary Major. According to Vatican spokesman Matteo Bruni, the pope visited the Marian icon Salus Populi Romani, before which he “expressed his gratitude for the success of his surgery and offered a prayer for all the sick, especially those he had met during his stay in the hospital.”
The Pope arrived at the Santa Marta guest house, where he lives, shortly before noon.
The Vatican has said the Pope is making “normal clinical progress” in his recovery.
While in the hospital, he spent time reading, doing some work, walking the halls and celebrating Mass in a private chapel.
The Vatican press office distributed photographs of the Pope walking through the room to the applause of medical workers, as well as blessing children undergoing treatment.
During his hospitalization, Pope Francis also exchanged warm messages with young patients from the nearby pediatric oncology and children’s neurosurgery wards.
Young cancer patients joined Pope Francis as he led the Sunday Angelus from a 10th-floor balcony on July 11, his first public outing since the operation.